Saturday, 9 September 2017

More from Venezuelan Virgilio Araque Reyes with his Guitar Concerto from 1982

Everyone remember him?  No?  Actually neither did I.  But check here where I posted his fusion masterpiece.  Later I mentioned him, perhaps inappropriately, in connection with our new discovery Nuevos Aires.  In fact this album came only two years after the Jamin in Venez but is quite different.  Sadly, like Brazilian Marco Araujo, he was fated to die soon after, in 1984, at the ridiculously young age of 31.

I love the photos on the back with their totally lo-fi view of two dudes in the basement, so far from that classical music stage they deserve.  And think of those poor Venezuelans... bound to suffer again as in (colonial) times past, with a brief respite in the holiday 4-star resort of democracy.  I've said it before: our 'liberal' democracies of the last 2-3 centuries in the West are likely going to prove short-lived, for many reasons, not just the presence of an infamous president.  Those who are familiar with the probability or statistical edifice based on Bayes theorem can appreciate why: the democracies of the past, few as they were, didn't last long and eventually all reverted back to autocracy, fragmentation or civil war, etc.  If you apply Bayes to our politics, the good times are not going to last much longer for any of us.  And if you employ Bayes at a species wide level, with the fact that 99 percent of species who have ever lived have gone extinct, those alive now being the remainder, things don't look any better.  And I covered Brandon Carter's anthropic argument that our presence on the earth today can be inferred to mean that the human population will crash in the next 100 years and trail off afterwards (completing the bell curve).

I love the childish arguments of on the one hand the AI promoters, who feel computers will take over from the human mind, and on the other, Hawking's recent suggestion we have 100 years to leave the planet.  Really? Who will leave, you and me, and that bunch of poor people who live downtown too?  The rocket will be like a soup kitchen and feed them for a few decades?  And will download their minds onto computers one day?  All of us? Even the billion people who will be populating India at that time? They're ALL getting tickets onboard the spacecraft?  They're going to be building shanty towns and slums onboard, complete with cardboard roofs?  Even the lower caste people who can then clean our toilets? The inhabitants of favelas get to take over computers too? and kill innocent virtual mothers instead of real ones?  That's why I refer to these ideas as childish.  Set in the social landscape of this real planet earth, they're laughable, like the kinds of things my 10-year old boy will say.  No, forget AI, computers, and spaceships, we will have to fix this only planet we have and it will be hard work, like cleaning up after a cat 5 hurricane, except the hurricane is everywhere.

And for entirely similar reasons it will be painfully hard to keep democracy alive in our countries that have enjoyed it so long.  Just look at Venezuela-- how quickly and easily it was taken away.  One person with more power than millions.

This is sadly solo guitar for the most part, quite different from the earlier magnificent record.  But the bowed bass works well in the last tracks La Llegada:

And let's hope hurricane Donald, hot on the heels of hurricanes Irma, Harvey, and soon Jose,  along with a huge earthquake in Mexico needing more dreamer deportations to rubble zones doesn't make this month 'Mega-Disasters Special!' month on the Discovery Channel...   Apparently, and thankfully, Trump decided to go with the speechwriters for his next rally: they convinced him to change his chosen title: "Sorry Marty King-- I don't have a dream... "

Actually it's time to wake up now...

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